The Hetzer was offically known as the Jagdpanzer 38t. It was a tank killer, or anti armor assault gun. The Germans took a high velocity 75mm gun and mounted it on the Czech 38t tank chassis and fielded almost 3000 of thee guns. People might perhaps wonder what role the assault gun actually played. I mean, isn’t a tank an anti tank weapon? Yes. But generally the heaviest guns were the best anti tank guns were larger larger guns that shot more powerful round. Most Panzer Mk IVs and Mk IIIs were armed with 50 mm guns. So to back them up in the role of taking out tankes, longer range higher power anti armor guns were mounted on smaller lighter chassis and held back at the edge of the battle field. The Hetzet had a gun that did not sit ina turret, so aiming it required a delicate operation of the teds which turned it left and right while gun itself only adjusted up and down.
The Hetzer had a ow profile and so proved hard to pick out and hit. It also had an armored enclosed work space that protected the crew from small arms fire. The 75 mm PaK 39 L/48 gun could stop most tanks. Hetzer means “bait”.
Source: Wikipedia, History Channel, Bernard Zee